Photo and illustration requirements

Want your photos and illustrations to be accepted into the Adobe Stock collection? Find out how to meet our quality standards and technical and legal requirements. 

We accept photos shot with any camera — including a mobile device — as long as they meet our standards.   

Aim for the highest quality standards.  

Businesses, ad agencies, design studios, and marketers want to buy great-looking, distinctive stock photos and illustrations. For your images to have commercial value, they shouldn’t show noise or dust and they should be well-composed, appropriately lit and exposed, and processed in an inconspicuous way.  

Here are some dos and don’ts to help you be successful: 

Image Selections

Do: Be selective — pick shots that can provide their own unique value. 

Do: Choose photos that offer space for copy.

Do: Ensure that your images are sharp by viewing them at 100%. 

Don’t: Select too many similar images. Learn more

Image adjustments

Do: Straighten horizon lines where appropriate.

Do: Adjust levels, curves, or brightness/contrast to ensure the best tonal range.

Do: Reduce noise if necessary — but don't overdo it, as you could create a soft image.

Do: Get to know sharpen tools and use them carefully — too much sharpening can bring out noise and unwanted texture. 

Don’t: Aggressively lighten shadows as this can introduce noise.

Don’t: Convert your image to black and white or duotone. Buyers want the maximum flexibility provided by the full color image. 

Image repairs

Do: Completely remove any logos and trademarks.

Do: Clean up dust spots.

Don’t: Add sunrays or flares.

Don’t: Create mirrored images, kaleidoscopes, or patterns.

Don’t: Use effect filters.

Don’t: Add vignettes or frames.

Don’t: Send the same file cropped in different ways.

Don’t: Send the same file flipped or rotated.

Don’t: Submit color and black-and-white variations of same files.

Do: Zoom in 100% and check your file before submitting.

Don’t: Compress files too much — this creates irreparable pixelation.

Don’t: Enlarge files.

Don’t: Add text or watermarks.

Do: Process your images subtly — clean color images that are in focus sell well. 

Do: Check out our Photoshop tutorialsLightroom tutorials, and Lightroom Classic tutorials covering everything from adjusting an image’s tone and color to sharpening.

Learn more about the Adobe Stock review process, and see how to create better photos for Adobe Stock with seven tips for success.  

  • Image format: JPEG 
  • Color space: sRGB
  • Minimum image resolution: 4MP (megapixels)
  • Maximum image resolution: 100MP (megapixels)
  • Maximum file size: 45MB (megabytes)

The Adobe Stock search engine prioritizes the first 10 keywords listed for each asset, so be sure to include your best keywords in your top ten.  If your file doesn't have embedded metadata, Adobe Stock will use Adobe Sensei technology to automatically suggest a title and up to 25 keywords to save you time. Review your auto-keywords, remove anything irrelevant, add anything you think is missing, and move the most relevant keywords to the top ten spots.

If you’ve already added titles and keywords in Adobe Photoshop Lightroom, Lightroom Classic, Photoshop, Adobe Bridge, or another image-editing app, Adobe Stock will preserve them. You can always edit that metadata before submitting your content.

Don’t use trademarked names (e.g., Porsche, iPad, or Ferrari), camera specifications (e.g., Nikon or 12MP), or types of content (e.g., vector or illustration) as keywords or in your title. 

Learn more about titles and keywords.

Adobe Stock content needs to comply with all laws around copyright, trademarks, privacy rights, property rights, and more. Review the Legal guidelines section of this user guide to make sure you understand key legal terms and know when you need to include a model release and/or property release with your submission.

One of the main things to know is that we can’t accept photos or illustrations that contain logos, trademarks, company names, or brand names — although you may be able to submit work in which these things have been digitally removed. 

Select only your best photos and illustrations and ensure that each submission offers something different. Don’t submit multiple images with minimal changes in angle or depth, or copies of the same photo with different postproduction effects applied. Submitting multiple copies of similar or identical content can be perceived as spam by our moderation team. Using long, non-descriptive, repetitive, or irrelevant titles and keywords can be perceived as spam as well. Spamming is strictly prohibited and may prompt us to block your account or close it permanently. Learn more 

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